Started off my morning with a 5:45am wake up call so we could be out from for a cab at 6:15 to head to Oak Trail for a quick 9 holes of golf. We were back to the room just after 9 and on our way to the Magic Kingdom around 10am. Arrived to find a lot of people and confusion at the entrance to the Magic Kingdom. They were asking everyone to go through metal detectors and were having mixed results. Took about 10 minutes to get through from bag check to inside the park. We missed our first FastPass of the morning so I rebooked it while walking. Stopped for a performance by the Main Street Philharmonic in the hub then walked through Cinderella Castle to Fantasyland and used our FastPass+ for Peter Pan. Then walked back by the Castle toward Tomorrowland. Got sidetracked by the Street Party that just rolled up so took some pictures of the Zootopia characters then made our way to Tomorrowland. Had a few minutes to kill so went for a voyage on the Peoplemover. Once back used a FastPass+ for Buzz then rescheduled our Haunted Mansion one earlier and went over there to use it. Scheduled Small World while in line and used that as soon as we exited and while onboard scheduled my next one for Pirates. Walked over and went for a cruise on Pirates and then headed for the park exit. Walked to the Contemporary and had to wait over 20 minutes for a bus to Disney Springs. Upon arrival walked over to the Boathouse for lunch. After lunch checked out the Town Center work then walked to Saratoga Springs and hopped on a bus to the Animal Kingdom. Walked out to Africa to look for the new Acrobats group, they were by the Market. Watched their performance then trekked through Pangani Forest and watched the gorillas for a while. Checked the Safari line, still too long for my patience so walked over to Asia and watched the Gibbons and another performing group near the Marketplace on the way over and then one in Asia too. Decided to loop back to Africa to check the Safari wait… it had gotten longer. It was almost an hour and the park was only open for another 45 min or so. Decided to wander through the park and the Oasis taking the path less traveled. Eventually made it to the bus stop and headed for Epcot. Met up with the rest of my group and we walked around World Showcase. Stopped in China for a performance by the Dragon Acrobats then continued on. It started to drizzle as we reached Morocco so we walked quickly to France for cover. Watched the film and upon exiting it was pouring outside so grabbed some food to wait it out. Just about 9pm we decided it let up and headed for the front of the park. We ended up having to cross several lakes along the way but eventually made it to the bus stop and back to Pop Century to end the evening.
Thoughts & Observations:
- This morning had a very early wake up call at 5:45am so we could make our 7am tee time at Oak Trail. I enjoy starting the morning with a round of golf. With our annual passes Oak Trail is included so it cost me $6 for a pull cart since I was too lazy to carry my clubs. Since it is 9 holes it took less than 2 hours for the round so we were still at the parks relatively early. Oak Trail was in ok shape. Some of the greens had seen better days but the fairways were in decent shape for the most part. Saw a couple deer along the way too.
- Decided to head to the Magic Kingdom this morning It was a little chaotic at the entrance. They were requiring all guests to go through the metal detectors. The problem was no one was really communicating this and the queues were not set up efficiently. Once you got into a line it was not too bad but it was a messy process and seems the security CMs spent a lot of effort trying to get people into line. They really need more space and better queues to do this.
- This morning we had some FastPass+ reservations booked and missed the first one due to our late arrival and entry. So I started playing around with the app and decided to see how many attractions we could squeeze into a couple hours. So cancelled the one we missed for the Mine Train, and used our first one for Peter Pan. Had another for Buzz already booked so kept it and on the way caught the Street Party and then the People Mover. While in line for Buzz used the new feature that allows you to book another FastPass from your phone now if you are in the park so added Haunted Mansion and it was ready by the time we walked over there. While in line booked Small World and walked on as soon as we exited. Did the same there booking Pirates and we walked over there and right onto it. So in under 2 hours visited 4 FP attractions, 1 non FP, saw a couple of performances and roamed the park. Not a bad morning.
- As I was on Buzz I kept thinking how it really needs to be updated. The mounted guns are harder to use than the rest of the versions of the attraction around the world and it would be great to see something done with the projection rooms so there were more targets. It is nice that the photo system is linked to your PhotoPass, but it would be better if it included your score like Disneyland does.
- The only real presence of Zootopia in the parks is at the Street Party. Judy and Nick are onboard a float and dance away. They do leave the float and interact with the crowd like other characters do though.
- The Haunted Mansion and Small World both have new magic experiences, or whatever they are calling it. Using your MagicBand they know information about you. So on the Haunted Mansion during the hitchhiking ghost sequence at the end it may say something like follow you home to California (or your home state). Mine did not work but the car next to me did. Small World it says goodbye and has your name on the sign. I am not sure if most guest will notice this and if they do if it is a good plus or not.. but it is something new.
- On Pirates I thought I was doing good after making it through the drop without getting wet then in the battle sequence a cannon blast went off to my right and got me (and my camera) quite wet. I really am not a fan of getting wet on every attraction.
- It was a hot day, in the 90s, and we were done in the park by lunch time so decided to head to Disney Springs for a nice lunch at the Boathouse. The problem with this plan is it is a pain to get there from a theme park. Ended up walking to the Magic Kingdom to catch a bus which then took us to Disney Springs. It took nearly an hour from the Magic Kingdom to Disney Springs.
- Had a great meal at the Boathouse so at least that was a positive. Then walked around Disney Springs to see if there was any other visible progress. Not much so wrapped up my visit and headed back to the parks. Vs taking a bus somewhere and transferring I opted to walk over to Saratoga Springs and take a bus from there. This seemed fairly efficient to get to Animal Kingdom today.
- I roamed around Harambe looking for the Acrobats that were supposed to be performing and found them by the Market. The show was ok but I was expecting more. Not sure what I was expecting but it seemed for a couple minutes to be ok but then the show seemed to drag on to me.
- After Pangani Forest I was walking through the Market area and I caught a trio of women performing. They were telling stories and singing. I did not catch their names. They had a very small crowd, only a couple families. They were interesting to hear and entertaining.
- Continuing my entertainment afternoon I caught Chakranadi in Asia. This duo consists of a Sitar and Tabla performer. It was a different musical style and interesting but did not seem to hold the crowd nor my interest for more than a song or two.
- Wrapped up my time in the Animal Kingdom then headed to Epcot to meet the rest of my group. Continuing the theme of the day stopped by China and watch the Jeweled Dragon Acrobats. I find their performances entertaining and I like how they have a couple different versions that they perform so it is not the same show every set.
- Our initial plan was to roam World Showcase and watch Illuminations. That turned into us hiding from a major thunderstorm in France then when it let up heading for the exit. The rain started to drizzle as we were passing Japan. Made a quick decision to walk quickly for France and cover. This was a wise move since the skies opened as we reached the theater entrance. Watched the film and then from the exit saw it was still pouring outside. So hung out and watched the rain and ate. Not a bad place to be stuck in a rain storm. The only problem was it was getting late and we were a mile from the bus stop. Once the rain let up we set off. This plan backfired at first as another cloud burst hit (so we took cover under an overhang). Then when it let up again we headed for the exit. Due to the large amount of rain in a short period of time the drains at Epcot were not able to keep up. So there were some “lakes” to cross along the way. A very large one was near the Refreshment Port. It was angle deep. Guests were going through the queue and planters to avoid it. Guests in ECVs were stuck and unsure what to do. I was really surprised there were no cast members in sight. It was not a good scene. We crossed the lake and went on to Future World. Both sides were flooded also near the Fountain of Nations. Again I saw no cast members and guests wading into the water. I walked through MouseGear instead. There was a more shallow body of water near the pin cart. Also another out by the Pop Century bus stop. Then to top it off the roof of the bus stop had water coming through it fairly consistently so you were not even dry waiting in line. All in all not the best exit experience.
Pedometer Information for the day:
|Moderate ||26,281 (5,720)
Parenthesis are the golf portion of the day.